Local cancer patient to get dream vacation at Disney World

logoSAN ANTONIO — The Dream Foundation is helping a terminal cancer patient fulfill her dream of going to Disney world with her kids and grandkids.

Veronica Velasquez has stage four sarcoma, a rare cancer that grows in bones, muscles and nerves. She has always dreamed of going to Disney World with her family.

The Dream Foundation donated money for her trip and held a presentation Tuesday at the Cancer Care Centers of South Texas. Staff there also wore Mickey Mouse ears to celebrate her trip.

Veronica says it’s a way to give back to her children and grandchildren who have been taking very good care of her during treatments.

“If I come out from chemo real ill, they’ll ask if I need a glass of water,” explained Veronica. “If I need food, they are just constantly taking care of me.”

Veronica is the first San Antonio Dream Foundation honoree this year. (Read more)

Wish granted: Terminally ill veteran gets dream vacation

logo The last four months haven’t been easy for Ricke Hassler and his family. On Jan. 3, Hassler, a local veteran and a manager at Pier Five Hundred in Hudson, was diagnosed with stage IV pancreatic and liver cancer. He was given less than a year to live.

With all the stress of his medical appointments, bills and planning for a future without him, the Hassler family needed a vacation to share some time together and build happy memories.

That’s exactly what they got on Friday, April 17, when they were paid a visit from two St. Croix County veterans.

Roger Larson, chairman of the St. Croix County Board of Supervisors, and Dale Cotch, St. Croix County Veterans Service Officer, were chosen by the Dreams for Veterans program to deliver a “dream basket” to Ricke that included balloons, hats, T-shirts and everything Ricke, his wife Lisa and daughter Molly would need to cover a five-day trip to Tybee Island in Georgia. (Read more)

Panama City nursing home resident skydives for bucket list

updated-news-herald-logoIt was eight minutes Richard Mase will never forget.

Sunday morning, the 54-year-old Air Force veteran got to cross skydiving off of his bucket list.

“It’s always been right at the very top,” he said. “To put it politely, the only thing that topped the experience was watching my kids being born.”

Mase has moved from his Navarre home and is currently living at the Clifford C. Sims State Veterans Nursing Home in Panama City where is he is supervised by staff 24-hours for liver failure.

“I’m in the process of dying,” he said. “Skydiving was a release and escape from daily life.”

Social workers at the nursing home had applied for Mase to skydive with the Dream Foundation, an organization that fulfills final wishes for adults.

(Read more)

The Story of a Prolific Texas Storyteller and Musician You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

TS_brand As a 12-year-old, Seguin-born and Corpus Christi-bred Charles Boeckman won an essay contest at school. He says he was blown away by the cash prize: a quarter.

After he won that contest, Boeckman says he decided he wasn’t going to spend his life working for someone else. Instead, he would become a freelance writer.

Boeckman’s natural love of reading served as the bedrock for his self-education. He also read and studied the great writers, psychologists and philosophers.

Boeckman started his writing career by selling children’s stories to newspapers. Then, he moved on to the “pulps,” which were wildly popular short story magazines printed on cheap, pulpy paper. They sold for ten or fifteen cents. Boeckman carved out a name for himself as a mystery/suspense and western short story author. (Read more)

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